Social enterprise partners take next step in growth: organizational development

Taking first steps in organizational development turned out to be a win-win for Women on Wings partners Grameen Sahara and Maitree and a Women on Wings expert. Early February Carla van Aalderen, expert at Women on Wings and Supriya Kapoor, Sr. Business Consultant at Women on Wings, took two social enterprises on an HR journey with the aim to realize organizational development.

New HR policy and organizational structure
Their first visit was to Grameen Sahara, Guwahati, Assam. Grameen Sahara creates sustainable livelihoods by setting up companies like the Golden Weavers Project, aimed at supporting local weavers and spinners. The Women on Wings team worked with Grameen Sahara’s CEO, three project managers and the people responsible for Finance and HR on designing the company’s new organizational structure and HR Policy. The Grameen Sahara team was very eager to learn. They are now aware of the fact that their personal growth will ultimately flow down to the communities they work in and for.

Maitree’s Pashu Sakhi’s
After Guwahati, the Women on Wings team travelled to Tonk, Rajasthan, where they worked with Maitree, one of the livelihood generation projects of SRIJAN. Maitree is a dairy company which supports marginalized, landless women farmers in creating a sustainable livelihood opportunity from milk and milk products. Maitree is scaling its operations across more villages and is eager to professionalize its set-up by setting up a pasteurization and packaging plant. To be able to support these changes, the Maitree team was eager to develop their organization structure and build capabilities of the human resources. The two-day workshop saw active participation from the chairperson of the board and other board members, all women dairy farmers, with very clear ideas and inputs about how to build Maitree.

Learning experience for Women on Wings expert
Carla van Aalderen is HR manager & Sr Advisor HR at Achmea, one of the largest suppliers of financial services in the Netherlands. By profession and interest, she is passionate about bringing out the best of a person or team. But she too learned a lot while working with the two Women on Wings business partners: “It was a great learning experience for me. It stimulated me to be open to what was happening, to be flexible and adapt what I had prepared to the needs at hand. I admire the passionate devotion to their work of all I worked with. It made me very much aware of the good life we have in the western world, which we often take for granted.”